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Peaches in high demand at Becker house

August 17, 2018

These days our family is on high peach alert. We have two peach trees that together have about a bushel of rosy pink and orange peaches clinging to their branches.

It’s a beautiful sight.

The thing is, to make sure that a peach has developed fully with its full sweet peachy flavor, it needs to stay attached to the tree branch as long as possible. You can’t just pick them willy nilly. A peach is a delicate fruit. The only time you know that it is ready to be picked is if it comes off naturally or when you just barely touch it.

We are anxious to eat these peaches, and we’re being quite patient. That means no tugging and pulling to get a peach. Our plan is to only gather peaches that have fallen onto the ground, which guarantees they’re ready to leave the tree. We’ve been scouring the ground every day to make sure we get the ripest, best peaches.

So far this plan hasn’t worked well. First of all, sometimes peaches land hard and if you step on a ripe peach that has recently fallen 10 feet from a tree branch, it isn’t a good thing. The peaches we don’t step on are hard to find and when we do find them, they usually have already been eaten by some animal. If the unidentified animal doesn’t get them, the ants do.

The peaches have been getting rosier and they are still attached to the branches. Seeing some dark pink peaches on some upper branches, I got a ladder and reached for one, thinking it would come off easily. It didn’t.

Here’s where we’re at now. On Sunday afternoon at about 2 p.m., my cell phone rang. It was Tom telling me that he was working in the yard, happened to look up and saw a peach fall off the tree. As Tom was predisposed, I dropped everything and trotted anxiously out to find a beautiful pink peach lying on the grass. No ants and no animal had chewed on it. It was nearly perfect, and it made a delicious peach ice cream shake. Now we want more.

So we’re on high peach alert. We aren’t camping out by the peach trees but it’s tempting.

I’m thinking it would be nice to have one of those game cameras under the tree that captures movement and could send my cellphone a text when it detects a peach falling.

It’s going to be a long couple weeks, at least until a very strong wind blows.

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